VIEWS OF THE SECOND COMING
A. This subject has caused great arguments.
B. The how is not certain, the when is not certain, but the event is sure!
C. Where did you get what you believe?
D. What is the purpose of the Second Coming?
E. Does the Bible teach a systematic eschatology?
F. Why is our day so interested in the Second Coming?
G. All theories concerning the physical return of Jesus are conservative views.
EARLY CHURCH PREMILLENNIAL (Historical Premillennial)
T I 1000 years
6 days of creation
1 . History of the Earth is
analogous to 7 days of
Creation (Epistle of
Barnabas, Irenaeus, Methodius)
2. Each day represents 1000 years
(II Pet. 3:8; Ps. 90:4)
1. Papias Irenaeus,
Justin Martyr, Tertullian
2. George Ladd (Historical
7" 1 Day of Creation
1. Certain events must occur before Parousia
a. Gospel to all nations (Matt. 24:14)
b. Conversion of Israel (Rom. 1 1 :25ff)
c. Great Apostasy (Matt.24:10; IIThess. 2:3)
d. Great Tribulation (Matt. 24:21)
e. Revealing of Man of Sin - Antichrist
2. A visible, universal Rapture and Coming
AMILLENNIAL (realized or inaugurated millennium)
1. The Church is Spiritual Israel
(Gal. 3:9,29; 6:16; Rom. 2:5,9,
28-29; Rev. 1:6; I Pet. 3:6)
2. One Covenant (Old and New,
Rom. 4 - Abraham is Paul's example
for justification by faith)
3. Christ's Kingdom is not temporal
4. One Second Coming
The Eternal Kingdom
1 . Some Early Church
4. Calvin (Presbyterianism)
5. Ray Summers (Baptist)
6. Jay Adams (Reformed)
7. Most Churches of Christ
1 . Victory won at Calvary,
2. Satan bound now
3. Unity of God's plan of redemption
POSTMILLENNIAL (millennium now)
(Millennium [1000 years])
1. Man's efforts will bring in the
Kingdom (II Pet. 3:12; Matt. 6:10)
2. Things are getting better and better
1 . Jonathan Edwards
2. A. H. Strong
3. W. T. Conner
4. Most 19" Century Scholars
1. Takes Second Coming Seriously
2. Man has a part in God' s plan
3. Optimistic about contemporary culture
69 th week
(II Cor. 5:10)
Several covenants (Adam to Moses)
70 th week Visible
of Daniel Return
1 There are 3 views of this Secret Coming:
2 Judgment of Believers (II Cor. 5:10)
3 Judgment of Nations (Matt. 25)
1. The Bible is divided into seven 1. John E
2. Literal fulfillment of every OT 2.
prophecy to Israel 3.
3. Church and Israel totally separate. 4.
The Church is God's Plan B when 5.
the Jews rejected Jesus as the Messiah 6.
4. The Church will be secretly raptured, 7.
before the Tribulation. The book of 8.
Revelation, after chapter 5, is Jewish. 9.
5. NT interpreted in light of OT prophecy
John Darby 1 .
Clarence Larkin 2.
D. L. Moody
C. I. Scofield (Reference Bible)
Dallas Seminary (Pentecost, Ryrie, Walvoord)
W. A. Criswell (Southern Baptist)
Bible Churches (Dallas Seminary)
Takes Bible prophecy seriously
Any-moment return (Matt. 24:40-42)
BOB'S TENTATIVE OPINION (Historical Premillennial/Post-Tribulationist/Nonmillennial)
Garden of Eden
Coming Judgment (II Cor. 5:10; Matt. 25; Rev. 20)
41 General Resurrection
The Last Days
J_Rapture (I Thess. 4:17)
Heaven as a new Garden of Eden
(Isa. 11:6-9; Rev. 21-22)
1. One Plan (Gen. 3:15)
2. Unity of the people of God
(Rom. 2:28-29;4; Gal. 3:29; 6:16)
3. Apocalyptic nature of Daniel, Ezekiel, and
Revelation (literary genre)
4. OT saw one coming (Two Ages), one visible coming
5. One visible coming (Matt. 24:27)
One Rapture ( I Thess. 4:13-18)
One Judgment (Matt. 25; Rev. 20)
The Eternal Kingdom
1. between Old Covenant prophetic models and New Covenant apostolic models
2. between the Bible's monotheism (one God for all) and the election of Israel
3. between the conditional aspect of biblical covenants and promises ("if.. .then") and
the unconditional faithfulness of God to fallen mankind's redemption
4. between Near Eastern literary genres and modern western literary models
5. between the Kingdom of God as present, yet future
6. between belief in the imminent return of Christ and the belief that some events
must happen first
1 . John Calvin said of the book of Revelation, "Only God knows what this means."
2. There is no approved or majority opinion on the Second Coming.
3. Every generation of believers forces the Bible into its own historical and cultural settings.
4. There is no systematic eschatology in the NT, but truth is revealed for us to "be ready" and "be active."
5. Only conservatives fight over this issue.
6. It is every generation of believers' hope, encouragement, and motivation to expect the Second Coming in their lifetime (Mark 13:33-37).